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Wild Rice
an Ojibwe legend retold by
Heather Cardinal and Becky Maki

Waynaboozhoo was worried about what his people would eat during the long winter months. For several winters there had been very little food and the people had suffered. Waynaboozhoo wanted to put a stop to the suffering, so he went into the woods and fasted for four days in a wigwam. On the fourth day he started on a long walk, and as he walked, he thought about how to keep his people from starving. He continued walking until he came to the edge of a river. By that time, he was very tired, so he lay down to rest and fell asleep. Waynaboozhoo awoke late in the night when the moon was high in the sky. He walked along the edge of the river and saw what looked like dancers in the water. Waynaboozhoo thought he saw the feathers of the headdresses worn by Ojibwa men. He walked a little closer and asked if he could dance along. He danced and danced until he grew tired. He lay down and fell asleep again. The next morning when he awoke everything was calm. Waynaboozhoo remembered the dancers but thought it all had been a dream. Then he looked out at the tassels waving above the water. He waded out and found long seeds that hung from these tassels. He gathered some of these seeds in the palm of his hand and carried them with him back to his wigwam. There he continued fasting. Once again he grew tired and fell asleep, and as he slept, he had a vision. In the vision he learned that he had gathered wild rice and that it was to be eaten. He tasted the rice and found that it was good. Waynaboozhoo returned to the village and told his people about the rice. Together, they harvested enough to provide food for the long winter.

Wild Rice
Word Problems

Join: Result Unknown
The people harvested ___ pounds of rice the first night and ___ pounds the second night.
How many pounds of rice did they harvest altogether?
(9, 4) (18, 6) (24, 18)

Separate: Result Unknown
Grandmother made ___ pieces of frybread. She gave Waynaboozhoo ___ pieces. How much frybread did Grandmother have left?
(9, 4) (18, 6) (24, 18)

Part Part Whole: Whole Unknown
Grandfather has ___ pieces of frybread and ___ pieces of venison.
How many pieces of food does he have altogether?
(6, 7) (22, 34) (37, 47)

Compare: Difference Unknown
Grandmother has ___ beads sewn onto her medicine pouch. Grandfather has ___ beads sewn onto his medicine pouch. How many more beads does Grandmother have than Grandfather?
(10, 8) (28, 12) (34, 26)

Grandmother has ___ baskets. There are ___ rice cakes in each basket. How many rice
cakes are there altogether?
(3, 3) (5, 12) (10, 12)

Measurement Division
A gatherer had ___ baskets of wild rice. He gave ___ baskets to each of his friends.
How many friends got wild rice?
(6, 2) (15, 3) (36, 12)

Partitive Division
Grandmother made ___ pieces of frybread. She gave the frybread to ___ friends.
If each friend got the same amount, how much frybread did each friend get?
(6, 2) (12, 4) (55, 11)

Join: Change Unknown
___ pounds of wild rice were gathered in the morning. More was gathered in the afternoon.
By late afternoon, ___ pounds of wild rice had been gathered.
How much wild rice was gathered in the afternoon?
(7, 13) (17, 27) (24, 36)

Separate: Change Unknown
Grandmother made ___ pieces of frybread. She gave some to Waynaboozhoo. Then she had ___ pieces.
How much frybread did she give to Waynaboozhoo?
(8, 5) (20, 9) (34, 26)

Compare: Referent Unknown
Grandfather had ___pieces of frybread. He had ___more pieces than Waynaboozhoo. How many
pieces did Waynaboozhoo have?
(12, 7) (23, 12) (43, 14)

Two-Step Problem
Each family gave ___ pounds of wild rice for the feast. ___ families gave rice. After the feast, ___ pounds of rice were left over. How many pounds of rice were eaten at the feast?
(3, 4, 6) (5, 6, 15) (6, 7, 26)